For nine months and three weeks, I had been anticipating the birth of my daughter. I even went as far as cancelling out days on the calendar as soon as a day was over.
In my mind, I had everything planned out, I would have my daughter, go home and start a new life and live happily ever after!
She would wake up once or twice during the night to suckle and after a short while of bonding with her mommy, she would go back to nap.
The next time she would wake up would be during the day, where we would spend time together, gazing into each other’s eyes, she would suckle again and go back to sleep.
According to me, life with my little angel would be perfect. My work as an academic writer would also run smoothly. No hiccups. No mishaps. I mean, multitasking is a female thing. And I can have it all, the perfect daughter, be a perfect mum.
That was wishful thinking on my part !
A day dream that was soon interrupted by the wail of a baby who had woken up in the middle of the night and had simply no intention of going back to sleep anytime soon, impromptu feeding and a much needed diaper change. And let’s not forget the must have burp, after every feed.
It’s been almost three weeks now since my daughter was born and my daily routine has been more than interrupted.
It was turned upside down! Just like any other new born, she wakes up at wee hours of the night and only goes back to sleep at dawn. Like all new borns, she needs constant attention.
Don’t get it twisted, I am enjoying every bit of this new venture.
However, this without a doubt has had its toll on the daily routine I had crafted out and gotten used to.
So how have I managed to keep my head a float and be productive even in the midst of a destructed routine? Here’s a few pointers
1. Be flexible!
No, I don’t mean you join a gymnastics class.
I mean you need to be able to adapt to your changing routine and work around it.
Don’t be a rigid time keeper, who can only work well when things fall into their planned out schedule. Move things in your schedule, add some, do away with some and fix others where space and time avails itself.
2. Get a support system.
I know this might sound like a postpartum necessity, but it isn’t.
It’s a post-my routine has been interrupted necessity.
I mean, who doesn’t appreciate a few extra hands helping out with things that you’d want to do but can’t?
If possible, get someone to help out with things that you might forget to do or can’t do at the moment.
This way, you still get things done and don’t end up with undone work load.
3. Inhale and exhale.
It can be stressful when your daily routine is interrupted and I don’t know about you but I tend to be counter-productive when I’m stressed out.
Remember, you want to be as productive as you can be despite being off balance with your schedule. So when you feel like you will lose it, breath in and out to help you relax.
Take a nap.
Have a cup of hot chocolate. Point is, relax!
Remember, you can only think straight and be productive when you are relaxed.
4. Forgive yourself and move on.
So you didn’t manage to get things done on time like you had planned. And now you are sulking.
Lost in your own pity party because you just can’t get things right these days!
Being hard on yourself won’t change anything. In fact it will only make the situation worse by wasting more time. You need to cut yourself some slack!
You won’t always work and perform like a robot. It’s a fact that you will have your moments of weakness when your routine just isn’t the same. And that’s okay. Forgive yourself and move on. Get something else done !
5. Create shorter and realistic schedules.
Whatever interrupted your schedule will probably not go away any time soon.
This means that for a while, you will have a lot of uncertainty when it comes to scheduling.
And therefore It’s easier to plan for today and follow through successfully than it is to plan for a week.
To avoid disappointment and confusion and ensure you are productive, create schedules that reach into the near future; one that you are sure of. Set yourself up for success.
6. Get it done now!
Procrastination will choke the little life that has been left in your schedule.
So why not save yourself the agony and get things done as soon as yesterday. Trust me, it will give some peace of mind amidst a messy routine. And, you get to pat yourself on the back…feel good about yourself !
So, the next time your well thought out routine is thrown out the window, remember it is possible to get some sanity in the madness and chaos. Take it from a working Mom !